By William Thompson
Quay County District Attorney Ron Reeves said a Tucumcari stabbing victim, Dustin Raines, recently left an Amarillo Hospital and cannot be found.
Reeves said there is a possibility that attempted murder charges against Raines’ assailants could be dropped if he is not found.
“I’ve got an investigator looking for him,” Reeves said. “If the victim is not found, we will proceed further with the case if we can.”
Reeves said that when and if Raines is found, he could be compelled to testify, but there would be nothing to prevent him from saying he simply did not remember what happened. Reeves said he has no theory as to why Raines will not come forward.
On Jan. 9, Dustin Raines was stabbed inside a house at 318 E. Turner. Three men were later arrested and charged with attempted murder. Two of the men, Andrew Gutierrez and Vince Molinas, have each been released on $50,000 bond. Frank Salas, Jr. is still in Quay County Detention Center on a $200,000 bond.
Raines told police early in the investigation that Salas had confronted him, claiming that Raines had reported Salas’ father to police. Raines further alleged he had been stabbed repeatedly by Salas during the confrontation while Molinas and Gutierrez allegedly hit him and kicked him.
Court records show preliminary hearings for the three suspects will continue into late February. Reeves said prosecutors will have decided by then whether they will be able to proceed with trials against the three men.